In a new interview with Kyle Meredith With…, Pearl Jam bassist Jeff Ament spoke about his desire to tour again as well as the obstacles that remain. He expressed discomfort with performing indoors, saying, “I just don’t know if I wanna go out and do 30 shows where you’re checking vaccination cards.”

Ament was promoting his new album, I Should Be Outside, which is his second solo release of the pandemic. He also went into Pearl Jam’s plans for a big tour. “We actually had a little bit of a play, like three weeks, four weeks ago in Seattle. We just got in a room. We weren’t playing any songs. We just jammed, and it was so beautiful. I just missed that so much. And we talked a little bit just about how everybody was feeling.”

He continued, “We have a few things penciled in for next year. Hopefully this [COVID-19] variant and whatever’s going on with the vaccinations and all that stuff, hopefully we turn a corner. It feels like we’re sort of still teetering on the edge of this thing. If we turn a corner, then hopefully we hit late winter, early spring with a tour, or a leg, at least. We’re jonesing to do it.”


But Ament isn’t sure it can be done safely right now. “Most of the shows that we have to make up for — the two legs: the European leg and the U.S. leg — most of those shows, they’re indoors. I just don’t know if I want to go out and do 30 shows where you’re checking vaccination cards. Hopefully we can be smart enough that we can just turn the corner and by March, we’re rocking and everybody can feel good about traveling and getting 20,000 people into a space.”

His concerns seem borne out by recent events. Foo Fighters have been requiring fans to be vaccinated, which has led to confrontation with anti-vaxxers and didn’t prevent a positive COVID test in their own camp. And precautions may not be enough. An early July festival in the Netherlands that was held outdoors and required proof of negative COVID-19 status was recently linked to over 1,000 new cases.

Listen to Ament’s episode of Kyle Meredith With… below.

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